Book One -- The things that sustain and support the entire body, and what braces and attaches them all. [the bones and the ligaments that interconnect them] | Chapter 4 On the Structural Relationships of Bones

afh/: Suture

The suture which the Greeks call rhaphe is a kind of joint that resembles things sewn together. Many, when trying to explain this, define it as a serrated seam [sutura serrata] and structure, others as an exact fingernail-tight union. The former remind us of the fitting together of two saws facing each other, where the projecting portions of each saw enter the open spaces of the other. The latter are said to be fitted “to a fingernail” when the projecting parts


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built in the shape of fingernails are inserted into depressions in which they can fit perfectly [sutura dentata]; this is the series of joints with which we often see the boards of chests or litters put together. 47 The later examples explain the shape of a suture more accurately than the earlier ones. So those find the best approximation who compare sutures to the appearance of ornamental borders of a seam when, as we said about fingernails, flowerets in one piece of cloth are sewn into the openings of another with matching inlets. The bones of the head are mostly joined by sutures of this type [suturae cranii]; and among the others, that suture most elegantly shows its type which we compare to the letter L [sutura lambdoidea] in the occiput (figure 1, Chapter 6, and A, B, C, D in figure 3, Chapter 6).

[Four illustrations showing types of suture at left margin of page:] (1) serrated fastening [sutura serrata]; (2) fingernail-like-like seam [sutura dentata]; (3) attachment of boards (rabbet joint); (4) fancy border seam. 48




Book One -- The things that sustain and support the entire body, and what braces and attaches them all. [the bones and the ligaments that interconnect them] | Chapter 4 On the Structural Relationships of Bones